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Veterans for Peace Arrested at Downing Street Protest

On the 10th anniversary (07/10/11) of the war in Afghanistan 6 peace activists blockaded the front entrance to Downing Street preventing any vehicles from leaving or entering. Red paint was poured onto the ground to symbolise the blood spilt in Afghanistan.

Today, 7 October 2011, marks ten years of non-stop war. For a decade British, US and NATO forces have been engaged in an on-going war in Afghanistan which has caused the deaths of thousands , wounded countless numbers, destroyed local communities and uprooted families.

The war has been going on so long we have forgotten the reason it started. Was it to capture Bin Laden? To remove the Taliban? To bring peace and human rights to the people of Afghanistan? To make the world a safer place? All these reasons – and more – have been used to try to justify the death and destruction.

The reality of course is that war cannot bring peace, nor armed violence solve political problems. Just the opposite in fact. Ten years is much more than enough time to learn this lesson. Let us bury the dead, heal the wounded and end the war.

By coincidence today also marks the 500th day of U.S. Army Specialist Bradley Manning’s imprisonment. Bradley has been accused of releasing footage of a U.S. helicopter gunship massacre of civilians in Iraq (see the footage at www.collateralmurder.com). We call for the immediate release of Bradley Manning and also for the release of British military refusenik Michael Lyons.

The six are – Ciaron O’Reilly, Martin Newell (London Catholic Worker), Chris Coles (Drone Wars UK) , Maya Evans (Hastings Against War), John Lynes and Ben Griffin (Veterans for Peace UK).

All six were arrested  and held at Westminster Central Police Station until midnight.

Watch a video of the action here.